Worship at Home for May 29

Dear Friends,

Welcome to the Memorial Day weekend and the seventh Sunday of Easter.

This Sunday Jesus prays for his disciples. Jesus also prays for us. Yes, Jesus prays for us when Jesus prays for those who will believe because of the disciples’ witness. How wonderful to know that Jesus prays for us!

Interest has been expressed in going to a Cardinals game this summer as joint youth group with BEM. Would others like to go to the game as a group? How about renting a bus and riding together? Please let me know if you are interested.

If you would like a home visit, conversation, or home communion, please call me at 573-437-2779 (church) or 573-832-2475 (cell).

Announcements:

  • Confirmation Bible Class Sunday after worship.
  • Monday, May 30 at 10am Memorial Day Program at the VFW.
  • Bem Church Picnic on Saturday, June 4 from 4-8
  • Arts Council Trivia Night on Saturday, June 4 at 7pm
  • Signup Sheets for Lay Reader and Greeter are in the back of the sanctuary.

Prayers and Blessings,

Pastor Stephanie DeLong

Scripture Lessons Acts 16:16-34, Psalm 97, Revelation 22:12-14, 16-17, 20-21, John 17:20-26

Sermon: Know God

Jesus is praying for his disciples and for us in John 17. Yes us, John 17:20 says, “I’m not praying only for them but also for those who believe in me because of their word.” (Common English Bible) Jesus is anticipating those gathered with him that night will witness to others about him. Jesus prays for those who will believe, because of that witness even when that belief and witness is many generations removed. So, Jesus is praying for us too! I don’t know about you, but I find a great deal of comfort in that.

Better yet we get to overhear just what Jesus is praying for on our behalf. Jesus prays that we will be one with him and the Father (and the Holy Spirit). That we will all be complete together, that we will be given Jesus’ glory and that we will all be bound together in love and in knowing God.

Being one does not mean that we are all the same. It does not mean that we all agree on absolutely everything. That would be just boring and perhaps a bit misguided. We are one in believing in God. We are united witnessing to what Jesus has done in our lives. That does not mean that all of our experiences and thoughts about God our the same.

Luis and I like to watch a show called “The Loud House” The story is about a family of ten girls and one boy and their parents. What I love about the show is the very different personalities of each of the children. One girl believes that she is beauty pageant queen, another sister loves sports, one plans on being a rock star, another loves science. Well, you get the picture, each of the girls is uniquely herself. This can lead to disagreements and troubles among the siblings. Sometimes the kids in the family fight with each other, but when they need to unite in love they do.

The followers of Jesus are all uniquely themselves. Each of us expresses our faith in our unique ways and knows God in different ways as well. Sometimes we disagree and argue, but we are all one in the love of God. We are all known to God. Jesus prays that we will all know God and have God’s love in each one of us. It is through loving and knowing God that we are one.

Memorial Day is tomorrow. This is the day when we remember those who have fought for our country and died. Memorial Day began after the Civil War as Decoration Day when the graves of those who died in service of their country were decorated with flags and flowers. The Civil War was one of great division in our country, but on the first official Memorial Day in 1868 the graves of both union and confederate soldiers were decorated.

Different branches of the military will dispute over which one is the best, serves harder etc. There is a long-standing rivalry between the Army and the Navy. The Marines believe that they are the toughest and the best. I could continue with the Air Force, Coast Guard, and the National Guard. No matter which war or branch of the service Memorial Day makes all who serve and served one as they remember those who died.

Believers come from many churches and traditions. We may argue over who is included, who is excluded, how and when to take communion, how and when we are baptized and more. Jesus prays that we will be one because we are stronger together. Let us know God together in faith and love.

Prayer: Jesus pray for me and help me to know God more fully. Help me to live in love with all believers. Amen.

Prayer list: All who have been on our list in the past and Elizabeth, Cheryl, Mindy, Dave, David, Ken and Evelyn, Jason, Paulette, Jaqueline, Friends of Shelby, Bobby, Kevin, Jim, Darryl, Gary, and for peace in the world in Ukraine and other war-torn places.

  • The community of Gaylord, Michigan after the devasting tornados last weekend.
  • The Texas School shooting and other shootings around the country.
  • All who are graduating this year.

 

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